‘Game of Thrones’ Purple Wedding Explained: 4 Scenes That Reveal The Mystery

Published 7 months ago by

game of thrones season 4 purple wedding joffrey Game of Thrones Purple Wedding Explained: 4 Scenes That Reveal The Mystery

[WARNING: MAJOR Game of Thrones SPOILERS Follow!]

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Well, it finally happened! Season 3 of Game of Thrones had the Red Wedding; this season it’s the Purple Wedding, and with it comes King Joffrey’s death, which fans of the series have been hoping for since he took Ned Stark’s head in season 1. How did it happen? Who did it? Let’s walk through everything that led to this moment!

The death of Joffrey (Jack Gleeson), or Purple Wedding – as the fans of the book series call it – is not a response to Robb Stark’s Red Wedding, as many may think, which Tywin Lannister (Charles Dance) set up in an attempt to bring an end to the war, albeit brutally. This week’s act of killing the child King is, for all intents and purposes, a terrific example of the underhanded double-speak and behind-closed-doors deals which fuel the complicated world of Westeros. Of course, things may have played out differently if Joffrey wasn’t such an awful person and insecure king.

The plan for the Purple Wedding ultimately began in season 2, was confirmed in season 3, then put in to motion in season 4. Did you catch all the clues?

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Phase I: “Do you want to be a Queen?”

game of thrones season 4 purple wedding explained 3 Game of Thrones Purple Wedding Explained: 4 Scenes That Reveal The Mystery

In season 2, episode 5, “The Ghost of Harrenhal,” Littlefinger – aka Petyr Baelish (Aidan Gillen) - asks Margaery Tyrell (Natalie Dormer) after her soon-to-be husband Renly is “mysteriously” murdered, “Do you want to be a queen?” “No. I want to be the Queen,” is her response – and so the plot began!

Littlefinger then convinces the Tyrells to ally with Joffrey, allowing Margaery to remain a queen, while at the same time removing Sansa Stark (Sophie Turner) from Joffrey’s grasp.

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Phase II: “Now, tell me about this royal boy, this Joffrey.”

game of thrones season 3 purple wedding lady of thrones Game of Thrones Purple Wedding Explained: 4 Scenes That Reveal The Mystery

In season 3, episode 2, “Dark Wings, Dark Words,” Sansa meets with Lady Oleanna (Diana Rigg) – the Queen of Thorns – and is asked, bluntly, to speak the truth about the type of person Joffrey is, as she would know better than anyone else. Lady Oleanna is a bit concerned with the man her granddaughter is supposed to marry.

After a bit of hesitation, Sansa says, “He’s a monster,” to which the Queen of Thorns replies, “Ah, well that’s a pity.” It is this moment which seals Joffrey’s fate. The ladies of Highgarden are playing the game of thrones to win, not die, it seems.

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Phase III: Purple Wedding is a GO!

game of thrones season 4 purple wedding explained 4 Game of Thrones Purple Wedding Explained: 4 Scenes That Reveal The Mystery

In the season 4 premiere, Sansa is surprised by Dontos Hollard (Tony Way) at Red Keep’s godswood who, after thanking her for saving his life, gifts her House Hollard’s last remaining heirloom, an amethyst-filled necklace. In the book, she’s gifted a hairnet with amethysts, instead.

At the wedding, the Queen of Thorns makes sure to visit Sansa and covey her condolences about Robb Stark’s death, after which she says, “War is war, but killing a man at a wedding – horrid.” During this skillful misdirection, the Queen of Thorns channels her inner-pickpocket and makes off with a single “stone” from Sansa’s necklace. Check out her slight of hand in the pics below:

game of thrones season 4 purple wedding explained Game of Thrones Purple Wedding Explained: 4 Scenes That Reveal The Mystery“Sorry about Robb!”

game of thrones season 4 purple wedding explained 2 Game of Thrones Purple Wedding Explained: 4 Scenes That Reveal The Mystery
“Got it, lol!”

Now that the Queen of Thorns has the poison, all she needs to do is to sneak it in Joffrey’s cup. Fortunately, the ceremonial dove pie cutting provided enough cover to sneak it into his kingly cup without being noticed.

Just one drink and it’s all over!

game of thrones season 4 purple wedding explained 5 Game of Thrones Purple Wedding Explained: 4 Scenes That Reveal The Mystery

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Phase IV: Die! (Sorry, Tyrion!)

game of thrones season 4 purple wedding explained 6 Game of Thrones Purple Wedding Explained: 4 Scenes That Reveal The Mystery

Of course, before Joffrey dies, Dontos Hollard returns to the wedding and attempts to help Sansa escape, tipping his hand – not to mention who all is involved – just a bit early. “Come with me now. If you want to live, we have to leave,” is all he needed to say.

As Sansa makes her exit, Tyrion is left holding the murder weapon (the goblet), and Joffrey points to his uncle as the one who poisoned him, making Tyrion the prime suspect and (perhaps) final victim of Joffrey’s horrific reign.

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game of thrones season 4 purple wedding joffrey dead Game of Thrones Purple Wedding Explained: 4 Scenes That Reveal The Mystery

R.I.P. Joffrey Baratheon

What did you think of the Purple Wedding? Did you catch all of the clues, as well as the Queen of Thorns’ sleight of hand? And how many little fingers does Lord Baelish have in this plot? Keep watching to find out!

…And until then, pay your respects to your fallen King in the comments!

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Game of Thrones airs Sundays @9pm on HBO. You can check out a preview of next week’s episode, “Breaking of Chains,” below:

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  1. SO!….whenever I hear that particular music at a wedding form GoT,some time bad is goin’ happen. :-)

  2. Honestly, I prefer Joffrey to Cersei. Better actor.

  3. None of the comments I’ve read in this posting mentions the very start of the reception scene where Lady Olena is pouring something in a pitcher. this is before she chats up saansa at the very beginning. though I haven’t read the books, it would seem that would have been an apt time…

    • well I’ve read the books so I won’t spoil it for you by going on and on about whats going to happen… from here on… I hate it when others that have read them go on and on about who did what and what else is going to happen..

    • She does not have access to the poison prior to chatting with Sansa. She must retrieve it from Sansa who has unknowingly brought it into the gathering with her.

  4. Another change from the book. Littlefinger breaks and tosses the necklace into the boat. In the book Sansa still had the hairnet and put in in the pocket of her dress at the Erie. I’ve figured there was more than one poison capsule and she’d have the opportunity to use it later against Littlefinger.

  5. 2 Questions:

    1. What has happened to the younger Stark brother and the Wilding woman? They were with Bran and co. but where did they go?

    2. Where have the Dragons gone to? Not seen in past two episodes???

    3. What happened to the long-haired “killer” that joined Dany after killing his two buddies (last season)

  6. 3 Questions:

    1. What has happened to the younger Stark brother and the Wilding woman? They were with Bran and co. but where did they go?

    2. Where have the Dragons gone to? Not seen in past two episodes???

    3. What happened to the long-haired “killer” that joined Dany after killing his two buddies (last season)

    • Mark:
      1. At Bran’s behest, Osha is bringing Rickon to the house of Greatjon Umber (the one who famously had his fingers bitten off by Robb’s wolf during the war council). Umber is dead, I think, but his house remains loyal to the Starks.
      2. They haven’t been needed the last 2 episodes, but believe me, they’re still around.
      3. They pulled a switcheroo on us and recast the role of Daario Naharis. He now appears as a bearded, short-haired fellow – the one who Daenerys chose to battle the “champion” outside the gates of Meereen in the last episode. While it sucks that we were left to figure it out on our own, I will give them props for casting someone who looks NOTHING like the other guy at all. They obviously weren’t trying to pull a fast one and hope we wouldn’t notice a la Becky on Roseanne or Darren on Bewitched.